My Thoughts on My Part-Time Studies

 Finally, I can sit down and write a blog post about my on-going part-time studies! It's been a harrowing really eye opening experience juggling a full time work, part-time studies and running my online shop.I had to be smart when it comes to planning my time so that I can include time for studies, basically for the recent ICAs or Individual Continual Assessment, which test my knowledge on what I have learnt, fulfilling orders for my online shop and some 'me' time or family time.

There are of course times where I struggle especially when my eyes are too tired to open when the alarm rang for me to wake up and catch up on my studies or orders. But despite these hard moments, I managed to carve out the time, nevermind if I have to wake up in the middle of the  night to either study or fulfill orders.

How's my class for my part-time studies? I enjoy them. I won't say that they're easy which I thought it would be easy breezy. I don't know where I get that from..haha. There were times during the classes where I could initially follow but then get lost for awhile, and at one point, was pretty frustrated where I couldn't get the damn formula right for Excel. However, the concept of having ICAs or tests instead of exams to test on what you have learnt is a good thing. I know, what is so good about exams right? Who in the right mind like tests or exams? I don't but there's no way you could go through a study course without studying. 

These test force me to carve out some time to get my concepts or knowledge right. I tell myself there's no way I'm going for the tests unprepared. It's as good as failing. I don't aim for high grades because I don't have things like the GPA like my brother who is studying full time at the same polytechnic. At the end of the 2.5 years, I just want a decent diploma as a stepping stone to my next career choice.

There were moments of frustrations where I get back home, had planned to do certain things and my sleepiness failed me. But I tell myself, it's okay. I'll make up for it the following day, the day where I don't have class and over the weekend. Ever since I started the part-time studies, there was never a weekend where I wake up later simply because I don't have to go to work. I still wake up early. Infact, earlier than on weekdays where I go to work. Every day I pray for strength to God and if I don't commit myself in working hard, it's as good as not fulfilling my promise to God. I know that God is there to guide me. He works in mysterious ways but He is certainly my main guidance in life, especially during my personal crisis. 

My classmates are pretty chatty and fun. They're not like wood and it's a pleasure knowing many of them. There are still those I have not talked to. I'm not as chatty as many of them but I open up myself up as a friendly person, someone that they can still chat with. They're also intelligent people who speak their mind. I still haven't grasp this concept though. I think I'm someone whom you can't have an intelligent conversation with, haha. But I'm there for you as a concerned friend or someone you can rely on.

Some of them really make the effort to get the class together. After all, many of us will be in this together. One of them had initiated a whatsapp group and we share info especially after our first ICA and our fear for the second ICA which involve around some excel formulas, which I never knew existed, haha. I have guilt moments when during my work, I had to do some revision or do some preps for the upcoming class or test. But I try to make up for what I couldn't do at work the next day.

I'm still learning on how to juggle my time. I know it will only get difficult in the future. But I know I can rely on myself to get things right and to always be prepared for the tests because the marks will add up before they can reward me with the modular certificate for each of the module completed. The diploma will still be quite far to achieve so I'll take it one step at a time. You're not looking at a potential A star grader but a potential diploma holder. Can't wait to wear the graduating gown one day :)

Okay how's the transport like going there? I would say that it's not so bad, provided I leave exactly at 6pm from work. If I delay even the slightest bit, good luck to me in trying to enter the train, like the other time I left at 6.10pm. OMG. I have to battle with the crowded train in Bartley and then in Bishan which is three stops away. The queue lines are always long at Bishan but it's still slightly bearable if I leave a bit early. The train will still be packed but I guess I'm used to it already. But I learn my lesson to drop immediately whatever I'm doing at work, make a dash to clear the mess, wash my cup and run for my life...or rather, the train..haha. 

My first week at the school, I was exploring the different bus routes that I could take including taking the train but I don't like to take the train because I have to get down to Bishan, go to Serangoon and then take the bus home. So after figuring it out, I take just one bus service, bus 45, to Serangoon rather than another service 70 because I don't have to climb the overhead bridge. I just need to walk to the lift to go up the 3rd floor and buy groceries. I still need to run errands for my mum and the supermarket is opened 24 hours. I can't get for them snacks though, like I usually do and only get them on the two weekdays where I don't have to go school.

So my life has somehow changed a bit. I am better off now than the earlier weeks after slightly more than a month. I'm getting used to the routine of leaving work earlier and going to school. Once a week, I'll buy food and eat dinner before heading for class. I enjoy the rice dishes and the halal Vietnamese noodles. Yumz. I LOVE Vietnamese noodles. Maybe next week, I'll eat fast food. Prepping for school also mean planning what to eat in school :p

Tomorrow, I have to prepare for the ICA on Wednesday which requires me to prepare a transcript for a speech which I have to present to class within 3 minutes *gulp* I MUST prepare to get as much marks as I could or prepare to die..haha. Speaking of these ICAs, how did I fair for the earlier two? Well, I am just thankful that I managed to find the time to get the concepts and formulas right because when I looked at the questions, it just spells doom if I don't study, apart from just attending the classes like seriously how much can I absorb, after 8 hours of work. But I'm guilty of eating into my work time because I prepared rather late. 

So now, for the third ICA, I will prepare slightly earlier. It's all about good time planning. This I must bear in mind *cross fingers*

For those of you who are pursuing part time studies like me, diploma, degree, whatever...I feel your pain. But don't be easily discouraged. You're doing this for a better future, opportunities and to make your life more enriching. I don't think you're doing this for fun. So far, the lecturers have been pretty kind by helping us prep for the ICAs because they know we're working individuals whose last thing in our mind is to study because we're all tired after work. But at the end of the course, we want to get a diploma for better career opportunities and promotions. Good luck to all of us! :)

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